Fr Aidan Murray has become the new Catholic Parish Priest for the Worth Abbey Parish which covers the Sussex villages of Balcombe, Crawley Down, Turners Hill and West Hoathly, as well as Worth Abbey itself.
Originally from Newcastle upon Tyne, Fr Aidan, 66, has been a member of the Benedictine monastic community at Worth since 1978 and a priest since 1983. For the last ten years, he has been the Bursar of Worth Abbey, which involved leading on significant building projects, including the refurbishment of the iconic Abbey church and the building requirements for Worth School as it expanded to become a co-educational boarding and day school.
After standing down as Bursar, Fr Aidan was given a four-month sabbatical and spent some time in Rome pursuing monastic studies followed by a spell in Jerusalem and the Holy Land. At the end of the sabbatical it was time for something completely different: with his brother he walked over the Alps from Munich to Venice in 32 days, a journey of 360 miles and involving some 20,000 metres of ascent. Fr Aidan’s other interests include carpentry, listening to music, family history research and food and wine ,“as monastic circumstances permit,” he says.
Fr Aidan said, “My predecessor, Fr James, filled this role enthusiastically for the last 12 years and he has put excellent structures in place.
“These are very good foundations on which to build and I am much looking forward to my new role with the challenges and opportunities for service which this presents.”